In a programme, there is the academic part, lessons in Finance, Management, Marketing... in order to acquire specific skills. Etienne Jarry's goal is to develop students' attitudes and capabilities, and to equip them with the human skills they need, through a range of extracurricular experiences: internships in France and abroad, Learning Expeditions, Humacité© and Climacité© projects. Introducing the new Head of Experiential Learning & Personal Development (EPD) for the BBA International.
Your namesake, Alfred Jarry, created Pataphysics, the science of imaginary solutions. What would be your own science?
I would rather talk about the vision I have for my new role: to offer students a pedagogical path that allows them to develop. It is about guiding them in the building of a professional and personal project, whilst remaining flexible, i.e. being aware that a project can evolve.
The challenge of my job is to create coherence and logic based on the experiences lived during the year, and to provide the necessary tools for students to advance beyond the standard student path. I value this notion of a path, because nothing is finished or fixed.
You studied at Excelia 15 years ago and here you are again with us. Since graduating from Excelia, what exactly has your own path been?
I really am very happy to be back at Excelia, the welcome has been wonderful!
Since my Bachelor in Tourism, I've acquired significant experience in sales-related professions: as an Accounts Manager, Sales Engineer, Sales Manager, working in an international group for 2 years and in the family business for 8 years.
I am particularly dedicated to customer satisfaction. It's the relationship with the other person that interests me, working together to find a solution... whether it’s about advising customers in choosing the right product or service, or helping students in making the best choices for their future!
On a personal level, I have been lucky enough to accomplish many dream trips, from hitchhiking across Patagonia to an 8-month road trip across Australia, to a total immersion in the life of the Balinese in Indonesia. All these experiences have helped me to mature and develop!
You are also an entrepreneur, working as a professional coach. Are you a bit of a workaholic?
Workaholic? No, simply enthusiastic and committed! Death entered my life three times in 2011, and this was the starting point for a major inner change, a long period of introspection. I made my mentor's epitaph my life motto: "Death is not the worst thing in life. The worst is what dies inside us while we live.” I began to look at my future career from a more humanistic perspective.
So, in 2015, I complemented my first degree with a university qualification in Professional Coaching from the UCO in Angers. Since then, I have set up my own coaching business and offer inspirational lectures. My mission: to enable individuals and organisations to express their deepest desires. You know... that little spark within all of us!
You are responsible for the management and creation of events such as Learning Expeditions and the Intercultural Night which will take place on Thursday 26th November.
As Head of EPD, what is your No. 1 priority?
Making sure that our work and pedagogy focus on the development of autonomy, which sometimes means that the student fails, tests, doubts, stumbles... in short that students live experiences that encourage the development of their skills and that will contribute to developing a solid and lasting personal and professional project. The School and the BBA are the perfect laboratory for getting to know yourself and discovering who you are.
In fact, it’s one of our mottos... "Know yourself and you will know the world."
A final word?
In these uncertain times, don't let COVID-19 stop you fulfilling your dreams, stay focussed on what inspires you, what motivates you, what enlightens you!